Assimilation Day…Week…Month…maybe a Long-term Process

None of the adult chickens ever enjoyed Ellis. Ellis is crazy. There are some things you can’t fix in a chicken and apparently head trauma is one of them. Her skin may have grown back together over her skull but the mental scars run deeper and she is just an absolute total nutter. It’s gotten to a point where she’s basically feral. Neither i or the other chickens can do anything with her. She’s kind of a lone wolf that does her own thing. However, Oakley started out very eager to gain the other chickens’ approval. She would copy their behavior and run around with them trying to be one of the pack. Daisy took a liking to her and began sleeping outside the coop with her and eventually offered her a spot on her roosting bar when nights got cold and the howling coyotes forced the younger chickens indoors for safety. Daisy showed Oakley the ropes of how to be a chicken. She stood up for her against the others when Oakley wanted to eat or drink. She sat with her and taught her how to take a dust bath. Everything was going swimmingly until Oakley decided to peck me, bite me, eat my earring, and pull my hair. Daisy never extended the olive branch again. She beat Oakley up and continued to do the same if either of the juvenile chickens had any more contact with me, friendly or otherwise. Daisy was not having any of it. Nobody was touching her mom. So Oakley lost her spot on Daisy’s roosting bar and slept in the nesting boxes instead. Ellis slept on the floor in the corner of the coop. I stopped trying to interact with the young chickens because each time i did Daisy made them pay for it. I didn’t see much of the young ones for a while.

Then one day i looked into the coop and saw a giant super fat chicken! She was as big as Rosie or bigger. I was so confused. I knew this had to be Ellis because no feathers grew on one side of her head. However, her size suggested i was looking at an adult chicken. It took me a day to figure out what had happened. Ellis did not like any of the other chickens. She distrusted everybody and viewed all chickens as potentially dangerous. This meant that while the other chickens slept inside the coop she slept outside the coop in the dirt. This meant that during the day, when the other chickens were outside scratching for bugs, pruning each other, and dust bathing, she stayed inside the coop all day by herself. There was not much to do in the coop besides lay an egg. The only thing that was in the coop was the food dispenser. While all the other chickens were outside, Ellis parked her butt in the coop and single handedly ate all the food for the day before i came home from work. Ellis was stress eating and hogging all the scratch. This meant Ellis quickly became a mutant neurotic chicken that was now so huge she could barely fly while the other chickens got really good at scavenging for insects and toads. Oh Ellis. What was i going to do with this giant nutter of a chicken? How do you put a screaming antisocial banshee on a diet?!

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